Last week the Internet had a bad feeling about Disney+’s Obi-Wan Kenobi series. Turns out that bad feeling may have been warranted.
As first reported by Collider, the Obi-Wan Kenobi series starring Ewan McGregor has been placed on hold for the time being at Disney+ and the cast and crew has been sent home as the studio begins the process of retooling the project. According to reports, Luscasfilm president and Obi-Wan producer Kathleen Kennedy was unhappy with the first two scripts written for the project and now Disney+ will be seeking out new scripts.
The Hollywood Reporter clarifies that Ewan McGregor remains attached to the project, reprising his role as the titular Kenobi the he portrayed in George Lucas’s prequel series. Also still in the fold is director Deborah Chow who became the first female director of a Star Wars project in The Mandalorian. Hossein Amini was attached as a writer for the series but with Disney now soliciting new scripts is likely no longer in the picture.
The Obi-Wan Kenobi series was relatively far into production with the studio even screen testing actors alongside McGregor. It’s unclear why Disney opted to start over now though THR speculates that it may have something to do with the spirit of the Obi-Wan hewing too closely to The Mandalorian. While it was previously confirmed that the Obi-Wan show would take place roughly eight years after the events of Revenge of the Sith, THR’s report suggests that in the original scripts for this series Obi-Wan would serve as a protector to young Luke and Leia Skywalker similar to The Mandalorian‘s “Baby Yoda” plot.
Speaking of speculation, this news may sound familiar to folks who spent time on the Internet just six days ago when reports began to emerge that Ewan McGregor had quit and the Obi-Wan series was on the verge of being canceled. Anonymous sources reached out to The Wrap to clarify that the rumor that the series was being canceled was untrue. But clearly there was a kernel of truth somewhere in there. All was not well behind the scenes on the unnamed Obi-Wan series.
The news of an Obi-Wan delay comes at a precarious time for the relationship between Lucasfilm and Disney. While The Mandalorian was an unambiguous success for Disney+, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker struggled with poor audience and critical reception in theaters. With Star Wars’ Disney cousin Marvel continuing to shine, expectations for the franchise are high. Now it seems as though new series like Obi-Wan are starting to feel the weight of those expectations.
It’s unknown when production will resume but sources told Collider that they were hopeful for the summer. The complete schedule of upcoming Star Wars movie and TV releases can be found here.